Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Fibromyalgia & Anxiety

I've struggled with various forms of anxiety just over the past 4-5 years. I'm not sure if it's a result of traumatic events, the onslaught of Fibromyalgia, or what.

But often through it, I feel like a bad Christian. Am I not spiritual enough? Of course I'm nowhere near perfect, but sometimes when I'm struggling the most with anxiety are the times when I've actually felt closest to the Lord. So why the anxious feelings that overtake my body and make me feel like I'm going to pass out, have a panic attack, or have a nervous breakdown?

I believe we can take medicine so long as we don't use it as an unending crutch, treating the symptoms and not the underlying problem. I do have anxiety medication on hand to take as needed, when needed, if needed. I really try to refrain from taking it as often as possible. I don't want to depend on it. I want to depend on the Lord. But when I can't pray or will the anxiety away, I do occasionally pop a pill.

When I work really hard at praying, quoting Scripture, and focusing on giving it over to the Lord... but it doesn't go away, I get really frustrated. I don't understand why this is happening. I do wonder if it's a chemical imbalance of some sort, but I'm not sure.

I spoke with a coworker recently who graciously reminded me that if we weren't struggling with such things, we might not ever realize Christ's real potential in our lives. If He's trying to humble us, may we be humbled so that He may be more glorified.

My kind, godly, wise chiropractor also recently reminded me that it doesn't make me a bad Christian, it matters if my heart is in the right place.

Beth Moore's Daniel Bible study I'm doing says this "God isn't looking for perfection. He's looking for purity of heart: our authentic desire to do His will and give Him glory.... The "eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him" (2 Chronicles 16:9).

I'm not sure why I struggle with anxiety, or why God chose this weakness for me, but I pray that I can somehow use it to bring Him more glory. I pray that I might be shown all the more my true human depravity so that He might be lifted high all the more.

My pastor once told us a story when he was struggling through something and talking with a good pastor friend of his (Erwin Lutzer) who reminded him of this (paraphrased):

Even the donkey knew that the palm branches placed on the ground before him were not for him, but for the person on his back.

May Christ be more exalted through my anxiety. Because if He's not, I don't understand the point.

What is it like for you - those who have Fibro and/or anxiety issues? Is anxiety a symptom of Fibro or does it just seem to accompany it? Or am I just completely cookoo? ;)

1 comment:

Alexandria said...

I really enjoyed this entry. I am a Christian and I'm actually training to be a missionary in Africa. Needless to say, Fibro is making that REALLY difficult for me. The pain, the anxiety, the burning in my legs, the memory loss...I'm trying really hard not to ask God why and instead ask Him how to use it. Perhaps its our gift, its just in a painful packaging. I have a blog too, feel free to follow. I need people who understand right now. Be encouraged that there is a sister in Christ in Alabama who understands. =)